We Make the Best Hot Chocolate in the World
Michael Klug, head chocolatier at L. A. Burdick in Walpole, New Hampshire, on making that perfect cup:
The Right Stuff
A great hot chocolate begins with good-quality ingredients. Klug opts for 2% milk over whole milk. “There’s already fat in the chocolate,” he explains. “And too-high dairy fat will make the hot chocolate too enriched.” For the chocolate, he likes a strong, dark variety, somewhere around the 65% cacao range. “It should be a chocolate you enjoy eating,” he says.
Mix It Up
Klug grates his chocolate into fine shavings, or chops it into little chunks with a knife. When he’s got a cup’s worth, he moves the chocolate into a small bowl. Next, he heats up three-quarters of a cup of milk, but only to the point where it scalds. “You don’t want it to boil,” he warns. Then he dumps the milk over the chocolate and whisks the mixture together until it’s smooth and the milk froths a little. “Sometimes I add some cocoa powder just to give it a little more flavor,” he notes.
You could transfer your new hot chocolate from bowl to mug and call it an afternoon–or you could go the cappuccino route and add steamed milk. Whipped cream is an option, too. Klug’s favorite touch: a few grated shavings from a cocoa spice ball. The effect is just a hint of nutmeg, cinnamon, and sheer envy from your friends.